I woke up about 5:00AM this morning. My mind was swirling. My blankets were being held down by our senior black cat (Spook) on one side and by her daughter (Booger) on the other. Normally that is a warm, safe and comfortable feeling - but this morning it felt different. Not a trapped feeling but a lonesome feeling. I tried to go back to sleep but couldn't.
I have always had hope of finding Starskey but I have also been prepared to find him dead in the ditch - but he is not to be found anywhere. I almost would prefer to have that closure then this feeling of uncertainty and limbo. I have never felt that he was dead and even when I felt prepared to find him in that condition - something told me that was wrong and that he was alive, but I had to look in those places anyway - just to be sure.
The thing that we found so distinguishing about him (the white 5 point star on his chest) has become just a white mark in the eyes of others. Do you have any idea how many black dogs there are with a white mark on their chest? I only know about the ones in about our 4 county area and the ones listed as lost on the internet.....and I can see why we are still receiving calls of sightings of our Starskey. I am so greatful to all of the people who are trying so hard to help us recover him but I am so frustrated.
My husband says I have become possessed. Maybe I have. I still get meals fixed, the house cleaned and the other stuff needing done is done - but I spend hours on the computer checking websites for FOUND dogs that might be Starskey and sharing reports of other lost dogs so that their owners might not have to suffer this prolonged uncertainty. It makes me feel better most of the time but it also makes me sad to know how many lost and needing pets are out there. I almost get mad when I read a post about a reunited pet and family - because I want that for myself so badly.
I've had dreams of how to prevent this from happening again. In those dreams we are putting up all the fences that we tore down when we bought this farm 30 years ago. I see myself restraining Starskey in ways that we have never restrained any pet that we have had in the past. Yes, we have used cables and a small outdoor kennel over the years - but they were for short term and emergency situations.....that is not how our pets were made to live. They ran free and roamed our property (and part of the neighbors) but they knew where home was, where they were loved and they always came when called.
Starskey had only left home once, for more then a bounce through the tall grass across the road. He went garage saleing with the Akita one day. He got 3/4 of a mile down the road. When the neighbor called me - I went and got him and he spent the rest of that day in that outside kennel. As far as I know - he never did that again and never even crossed the road unless we were outside where he could see us. At least that is what I want to think......but he always came running when called and always was right there when I went out the door - until that day in December when he went out and just vanished.
I have come to believe that he was picked up or stolen. He was such a charming fellow and he loved a car ride so any open car door was an invitation. It is just that with so much local publicity and so much effort on our part - I just can't believe that someone hasn't heard that we are looking and that we want him back home. We didn't kick him out - we let him out to go to the bathroom..........
I see in my Facebook news that some people are reporting their dogs stolen and finding them listed for sale on the internet or recovering them because somebody sold them and the buyer had them vet checked and found the ID chip. That is really scary! As charming as he is Starskey is just a mix breed without the ability to pass his genes on - so what other reason would someone want a year old pup? Maybe I don't want to know all the answers to that question....but why Starskey and why in the corn fields and snow drifts of Iowa when there are so many more in other places?
I know - playing "what if" doesn't help any. Getting it off my chest does though. Like I said - my husband thinks I am possessed and he doesn't want to talk about all of it anymore - to me at least. I do hear him telling other people about Starskey and of how hard we have looked and are still looking......I guess that is the bottom line - the uncertainty is killing us both but we just can't talk about the "feelings" with each other anymore. That hurts because, without evidence to the contrary, I have to believe he is alive.
Okay - I know where I am going next with this. I am going to tell you all about the wonderful little puppy that picked me to be part of his pack - and about the 9 months that I was allowed to be a part of his life. I'll be back.................